We know from experience that it can be hard choosing the right team-building program. There are lots of factors to consider, from price to location to the logistics of getting everyone in the right place at the right time.
The past year has made this process even harder due to dramatic shifts in how we work. We have seen explosive growth not only in remote work but also hybrid work regimes (spending some days at home and some days in the office), something that was talked about only hypothetically a short while ago.
Along with remote work, social distancing measures have also affected our work lives, including our daily habits and routines. As these habits continue for longer and longer, it seems safe to say that there is a high chance that they will become habitualized.
So what activities are still available for you to choose from, given social distancing measures, and how should you choose? We know that there are many questions about safety protocols and whether certain activities meet social distancing standards. In this blog post, we will break down our available team building options for you one by one and explain what each has to offer.
Note: All of our team building activities are fully bilingual (English and Japanese). All instructions and other material received during the game will be in both languages. We also offer facilitation services in both languages as well.
1. Online Team Building–”Tabitantei”
This is our newest team building offering, designed specifically in response to work-from-home and social distancing requirements. It is also the safest option here since it is 100% virtual and online. This means that if you are concerned about congregating for an event in person, you can still provide your team with a fun, challenging, and team-strengthening activity. It also means that if you have members who are working from home, they can join in too.
Another huge benefit of virtual team building is that team members from all over the world can join in at the same time. Already we have had groups that have been stationed in separate continents play together. It really opens up amazing possibilities for international teams or conferences, especially since travel is so limited. Tabitantei can be a great way for team members who haven’t interacted so much to get to know each other and break the ice.
Price per person: ¥5,400 (¥9,800 with supplemental workshop)
Time: 90 minutes standard (game time can be lengthened or shortened)
Group size: 2~80
Recommended for: Remote/work from home teams, international teams, new year parties, end of year parties.
2. Hidden Secrets Journey (HSJ)
Hidden Secrets Journey is our outdoor scavenger hunt offering. The game consists of a number of puzzles scattered around a certain area, all based on building facades, store signs, monuments, or interesting markers. Using a map and puzzle book, teams are guided to different locations in order to solve the puzzles and find all the keywords.
Due to the fact the game takes place completely outdoors in small groups, Hidden Secrets Journey is very social-distancing-friendly. It is also our most flexible when it comes to group size. Groups of up to 100 plus can play at once, making it great for very large teams. It is also possible to have groups start and end at different places, or even run two different games in separate locations at the same time, allowing for increased social distancing.
With all its flexibility and the fact that it takes place outside, HSJ is a great option for those groups who want a safe way to have face-to-face interaction and spend time outside. Plus, there are multiple locations for HSJ spread across the Tokyo area to choose from–including Asakusa, Nihonbashi, and Yokohama.
Price per person: ¥9,500
Time: ~3 hrs. (game can be shortened or lengthened according to request)
Group size: 20~100 + (teams of 5-6)
Recommended for: Large groups, conferences, groups that want to spend time outdoors
3. Suitcase Mystery
Suitcase Mystery is our dispatch puzzle game (it’s like an escape room in a transportable box). Players in teams of 5~6 work together to solve all the puzzles in the box within the time limit. This is one of our most popular team building activities. It brings team members together in a natural way and makes teams think about combining different skills and talents. Many companies have used Suitcase Mystery specifically for new employees to see how they work together and what skills they bring.
The biggest benefit of Suitcase Mystery is it’s flexibility. Because the game is not based on any specific location and does not require any special technology or set-up on your end, it can really be played anywhere–at the office, in a hotel conference room, at a company retreat, etc. Suitcase Mystery can also accommodate rather large groups of up to 100 players at a time.
Of course, Suitcase Mystery requires that team members play together and inside. We take every precaution to ensure the safety of players and will work with you to accommodate any health and safety concerns. There is actually quite a bit of flexibility here as well, since teams can play in different areas or rooms, or at different times, which makes Suitcase Mystery a fine option when it comes to practicing social distancing.
Price per person: ¥9,500
Time: 1 hr. (plus some time for introduction and conclusion; a supplemental workshop can be added on to make the program longer)
Group Size: 5~100
Recommended for: Conferences, retreats, new employee training, new year parties.
It’s always a good time for team building, and this year is no exception. In fact, team building is even more important now, and social distancing doesn’t have to get in the way. Kick your team building into high gear this year by using one of the high-quality, fun, and engaging puzzle-based programs listed above. There are multiple options available to you for planning a perfect event for your team. All of these activities will help your team bond and forge lasting relationships and memories that are the foundation for cohesive, effective teams that can weather any challenge together.
The programs listed above represent Invite Japan‘s ready-to-go team building packages. If you have an idea for an event or activity that lies outside of these, please let us know–we will be happy to collaborate with you and bring your ideas to fruition. Additionally, any of these programs are customizable in terms of keywords, messages, designs, and other content that your company would like to communicate to your team. Please feel free to reach out to us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone at 050-5491-5718.